|dc.description.abstract||The long-standing history of aggressive behaviour in South Africa, not only in schools, but also in higher education institutions, is a cause of concern. Although extensive research has been done on aggression, very little of it has been done at universities. This thesis attempts to fill the gap. It uses a phenomenological approach and the lens of an interpretivist paradigm to understand and make meaning of female students’ experiences of social aggression in university on-campus residences. As qualitative research, it is explanatory, descriptive, exploratory and contextual in nature.
This research study aims to i) explore and describe female on-campus residence students’ conceptualisation of social aggression, ii) explore and describe female on-campus residence students’ experiences of social aggression in their residences, iii) explain why female on-campus residence students resort to social aggression, and iv) make suggestions on how female on-campus residence students can change social aggressive behaviour in residences.
Purposive sampling was used to select female students from female on-campus residences at the North-West University (NWU), Potchefstroom campus, South Africa. The data generation entailed two phases: individual interviews and individual photo-elicitation-interviews. Consent to conduct the data generation process was gained from: the Dean of Students; the Chairperson of the Student Representative Council; the House Parents (Wardens) of the female on-campus residences; the Primaria of each of the respective university on-campus female residences, and female students in on-campus residences.
The Interpretive Phenomenological Analysis (IPA) method is used to analyse the data. Throughout the data generation and data analysis process the researcher made sure that due account was taken of the relevant ethical considerations. Trustworthiness was ensured by applying the following criteria: truth value (credibility); applicability (transferability); consistency (dependability); neutrality (confirmability).
Two themes were agreed on during a consensus meeting with the independent coder: Theme 1 is female students’ diverse experience of social aggression in university on-campus residences. Theme 2 is female students’ suggestions to change socially aggressive behaviour in female on-campus residences. The participants made the following suggestions. To deal with social aggression in their on-campus residences, female students should: seek support from others when they are subjected to negative comments; address any socially aggressive behaviour in a group context; do a Functional Behaviour Assessment to identify the type of behaviour that provokes social aggression; use strategies like tootling, which focus on the positive characteristics of others; and have open channels of communication between themselves and the House Committee (HK) so that social aggression can be dealt with in the early stages||en_US